If your injury was caused by another party’s negligence, there is a likely chance that you may be entitled to compensation, but have you ever wondered whether it is better to settle your personal injury case versus having it go to court?
The truth is no two cases are alike, so there can be advantages and disadvantages with either strategy depending on your particular case and personal situation.
To help you better understand the potential advantages and disadvantages of personal injury settlements and jury trial verdicts, Boulton Law Group has taken a closer look at each of them below.
Settling Your Personal Injury Case
It surprises some accident victims to learn that a large majority of personal injury cases settle without the need for filing an official lawsuit.
In fact, attorney Matt Boulton is able to settle 95% of his clients’ cases by reaching an agreement with the insurance company in the pre-litigation phase.
The potential advantages of settling your personal injury claim may include:
- Avoiding the unpredictable outcome of a jury trial.
- Fewer requests on your personal time and involvement.
- Increasing the chances that you will receive your compensation in a more timely manner.
However, determining whether or not your particular case is better served by reaching a settlement will often depend on whether or not the insurance company is making a fair offer for your injuries and pain and suffering.
The majority of Matt’s clients have never had to file a personal injury claim before, which can make it quite difficult to accurately assess the value of their own case. For example, how much is a car accident injury claim really worth?
One advantage of hiring an experienced personal injury attorney is that they work on these types of cases every day. They will be able to help assess your particular case and provide you with a realistic value of your claim, whether it be for a broken bone, brain injury, whiplash, or one of several other types of injuries.
As such, before Matt enters into negotiations with the insurance company, he will discuss with you what he believes your case to be worth and ask you to grant him an authority level for case settlement. In other words, he will never settle your case for a dollar amount below what your case is believed to be worth without your permission.
Once negotiations start, there may be a series of offers and counteroffers, as the insurance tries to settle your case for the smallest amount possible and Matt attempts to collect maximum compensation on your behalf.
After Matt has reached or exceeded your case’s assigned authority level, a settlement is typically reached and there is no need for Boulton Law Group to file a lawsuit.
Taking Your Personal Injury Case to Court
“I’d really like to take my personal injury case to court!”
That’s not something Matt often hears from his clients. In fact, for many accident victims, the idea of having to go to court to settle their personal injury case often leaves them thinking one of the following:
1.) “Going to court sounds intimidating, which will make me nervous, and I won’t make a great appearance.”
2.) “If my case goes to court, it could take a lot longer to receive my compensation.”
While either of those thoughts may initially be valid concerns, let’s take a quick look at the general process before examining the potential advantages and disadvantages of going to court.
First, a personal injury verdict is a ruling that will be determined by the judge and/or jury of an official court proceeding. To reach this stage, Matt will be required to file a proper lawsuit on your behalf. After the lawsuit is filed with the appropriate county court, a trial date will then be determined.
Before the trial date is reached, Matt will work with you to explain the process, set expectations, and provide you with a clear understanding of what to expect once you reach the courtroom. In short, he’ll be there to provide you with counsel the entire way.
Once the trial date is reached, Matt and the attorney for the defending insurance company will be allowed to present their sides of the argument. After each party has presented its case, the judge and/or jury will then deliberate and return with a majority vote related to their findings.
And while the above certainly represents a condensed version of a personal injury trial, it is important to keep in mind that a lawsuit is often not necessary unless one of the following occurs:
- The insurance company takes a position that you share some or all of the fault for the accident and Matt believes there is evidence that proves otherwise.
- Matt believes the total amount of compensation being offered is simply unfair.
If either of the above is a legitimate concern for your case, going to court offers an opportunity to challenge the insurance company’s findings.
However, there are also some potential disadvantages that may arise as the result of a jury trial, such as:
- It can greatly increase the amount of time it takes to secure your compensation.
- There is always a risk that a judge or jury will perceive the case unfavorably and rule for the defendant.
- A judge or jury may rule in your favor, yet award you with less money than was originally offered by the insurance company.
In addition to the above considerations, there can also be a number of other factors that play into deciding whether or not your case would best be served by going to court. The final decision should be made in agreement with your attorney based on the specific facts surrounding your particular accident and injuries.
Should I Settle or Go to Court?
Generally speaking, it is often in a person’s best interest to reach a personal injury settlement rather than putting it in the hands of a judge and jury. In many instances, a settlement helps Boulton Law Group’s clients avoid the time and expense often associated with court proceedings.
However, while there may be potential advantages to settling a case, you should never assume this is the best option for your particular situation. Matt will not hesitate to file a lawsuit on your behalf if after viewing the facts he determines that going to court would greatly benefit your case.
Ultimately, to help you determine whether a settlement or jury trial is best for your personal injury case, we recommend that you consult with an experienced Indianapolis personal injury attorney.
Contact an Indianapolis Personal Injury Attorney
Attorney Matt Boulton has more than 20 years’ experience helping injured Hoosiers with a wide variety of questions regarding their personal injury claims, including whether or not they should settle their case.
In addition to settling personal injury cases for his clients throughout Indiana, Matt has also filed lawsuits for a number of accident types, including:
- Car accidents
- Semi-truck accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Dog bite injuries
- Negligent security
- Wrongful death
- Slip and falls
Boulton Law Group offers every injured Hoosier a Zero Fee Guarantee. This promise means that you will never be charged for friendly legal advice, and our firm does not receive a penny for its services until we make a recovery on your behalf.
To speak with Matt today, call direct at 317-350-2680, or write to us by using our website’s confidential contact form. Matt personally reviews every web contact received at our firm.
We look forward to hearing your story!
Attorney Matt Boulton is an award-winning personal injury attorney with more than 20 years of experience helping seriously injured people throughout Indiana reclaim what was taken from them. His firm was created for for the client who expects exceptional service and passionate, successful legal representation.